Three Signs You Might be an Alcoholic
This post is for you. The lovely person that just googled, "Am I an alcoholic?" No one can tell you that you do or don't have a problem. Only YOU can recognize this within yourself. That being said, there are a few similar behaviours that addicts have in common on their decline. These behaviors are the window to what is happening within your body-you are losing the control.
1. You start making rules for your drinking.
You decide to only drink when you go out. No keeping alcohol in your home. Only drink when someone else is around. Sometimes your dog is "someone else." You are still drinking, but you are making rules as to when and where you will drink. You will only have 1 glass. You will only have 2 glasses. You will only have 3. It is very common. Most of the time you cannot follow through 100% with these rules. But, it gives you the illusion of control. Guess what? It is just an illusion.
2. You set a goal to abstain from drinking for a period of time.
This is a big one. You say to yourself, "I am drinking too much. I am going to take a week/month/year off." If you cannot meet your goal, take a look into help with a counselor or doctor. You have a surefire chemical addiction if you set yourself an abstinence goal and cannot follow through with the first 24 hours. Even if you can follow through, you might have a problem if you return with a vengeance.
3. You change your drug of choice.
"I only have a problem with red wine." So, you drink white. "I only overdrink wine, not beer." You drink beer. If you ever have to say the words, "I only have an over-drinking problem with..." You have a problem. If you ever identify a problem with a particular drink, don't try and convince yourself it will be different with something else. It's a glass of wine. You should be able to drink one of any variety without it taking over. Sometimes people give up drinking and start with prescription pills given to you by a doctor. I did. This is why they allow alcoholics at Narcotics Anonymous. An addict is an addict no matter how socially acceptable your addiction is. Don't pick another seat on the Titanic.
We all start trying to control the addiction before it takes over. Hey, sometimes it works...but sometimes it doesn't. If your efforts at control do not succeed, get help. You are not just risking your sanity. You are risking your life. Odds are if you're asking yourself if you have a problem...you already know.